Vocational Rehabilitation for FedEx Drivers
FedEx drivers are at risk of injury all day every day on the job. These injuries can be the result of repetitive stress on certain parts of the body, aggravation of a preexisting condition, illness, or a truck accident. Sometimes these injuries are significant enough that drivers can no longer do their jobs and need to seek out a different job or line of work. If you need to seek vocational rehabilitation as a FedEx driver who was injured on the job, you should call the seasoned Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca. We have more than sixty years of experience and may be able to represent you.Vocational Rehabilitation For FedEx Drivers in and Around Chicago
Section 8(a) allows FedEx drivers and other employees to obtain vocational rehabilitation. This is education, training, counseling, and treatment needed by workers in order to rehabilitate after suffering injuries that leave them unable to perform the same jobs as before. In addition to the rehabilitation itself, a FedEx driver is entitled to maintenance costs and expenses.
Under Rule 7110.10, Chicago employers need to put together a vocational rehabilitation plan. FedEx needs to put together a plan of this sort if you’re not able to drive the FedEx truck or lift packages or they’re not able to work more than 120 days in a row. For example, if you are left permanently paralyzed from the waist down after a collision with a semi-truck, but you could do a desk job, FedEx may be on the hook to put together a plan for you to get retrained and receive maintenance costs during the period of your training.
There are also circumstances under which it may not be clear whether you’ll be able to work again in the same job or where FedEx is willing to train you itself for a different position within the company that you would be able to do. It may be appropriate in that instance for FedEx to hold off on determining your eligibility for vocational rehabilitation benefits. However, every situation is unique, and the rules around such an evaluation are not crystal-clear, which makes it crucial for you to seek legal advice from seasoned Chicago workers’ compensation lawyers if FedEx won’t pay for training to which you’re entitled. In the event that you need to take a different position at FedEx that pays less, you may be able to obtain partial disability benefits.What if FedEx Won’t Pay for Vocational Rehabilitation?
FedEx may not want to pay the vocational rehabilitation benefit even though you need it. Our lawyers may need to ask for a hearing in front of an arbitrator with the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission in order secure this benefit on your behalf. The arbitrator will look at whether your work injuries reduce your ability to earn money, whether there’s evidence your earning ability would be increased through rehabilitation, whether it is likely you’d get employment after being retrained, and whether you’ve gone through a past program of this sort.
Other factors include whether the job you’re training for is secure and whether you could get the job even if you didn’t receive additional training. You may not be able to get vocational rehabilitation if you don’t have many more working years before retirement or you simply don’t have the capacity to do the job for which you’d like to be retrained.
You may be asked to make a good faith effort to find a different job without vocational rehabilitation. If you continue to be rejected for that other type of job but other factors indicate the other job would be suitable, you may be able to get vocational rehabilitation.Call a Workers’ Compensation Lawyer about Vocational Rehabilitation
We represent injured FedEx workers seeking vocational rehabilitation benefits in Aurora, Champaign, Rockford, Quincy, as well as Sangamon, Winnebago, Kane, Cook, and Adams Counties. Our Chicago lawyers also represent clients in third party lawsuits and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claims. Call us at 312-263-6330 or 800-444-1525 or complete our online form.